Artax (horse)

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GrandsireConquistador Cielo
DamRaging Apalachee
CountryUnited States
ColourDark Bay/Brown
BreederVinery Stud & Carondelet Farm
OwnerParaneck Stable
TrainerLouis Albertrani
Record25: 7-9-3
Major wins
Santa Catalina Stakes (1998)
San Felipe Stakes (1998)
Carter Handicap (1999)
Forest Hills Handicap (1999)
Vosburgh Stakes (1999) Breeders' Cup wins:
Breeders' Cup Sprint (1999)
American Champion Sprint Horse (1999)
Last updated on June 20, 2010

Artax (1995–2012) was an American Champion Thoroughbred racehorse. He was named after a horse featured in the children's fantasy novel The Neverending Story.[1] Artax equaled or broke three track records during the 1999 racing season when he won the Breeders' Cup Sprint, Carter Handicap and Forest Hills Handicap.[2] Those victories, coupled with a win in the Vosburgh Stakes, earned him that year's Eclipse Award as champion sprinter.[3]

During the 1999 running of the Maryland Breeders' Cup, an inebriated man (Lee Chang Ferrell) walked under the rail at Pimlico Racecourse on Preakness Day and stood in front of the field. As Artax came by, he attempted to hit him and the horse moved over several paths, making contact with other horses and wrenching his ankle. Ferrell was not injured. All betting money on the horse, who was the 4/5 favorite, was refunded.[4]

Artax was retired to stud in 2000. He stood at several farms, including Clermont Farm in New York, Taylor Made Farm in Kentucky and Diamond G Ranch in Edmond, Oklahoma before being moved to Haras Santa Tereza do Bom Retiro in Brazil.[2] His most notable offspring include Diabolical, winner of the Alfred Vanderbilt Handicap,[5] and Grade I winner Friendly Michelle.[2]

Artax died on January 8, 2012 in an equine hospital in Brazil due to complications from colic.[2]


  1. ^ Privman, Jay (April 3, 1998). "HORSE RACING; Artax, a Giant Colt, Faces a Strong Derby Test". New York Times. Retrieved 4 April 2012.
  2. ^ a b c d "Champion Sprinter Artax Dies". The BloodHorse. 9 January 2012. Retrieved 9 January 2012.
  3. ^ "1999 Eclipse Awards List". ESPN. 18 January 2000. Retrieved 9 January 2012.
  4. ^ Klingaman, Mike (May 16, 2009). "Swing And A Miss: Man Vs. Horse Remembered: 10 Years Later The Punch". The Baltimore Sun. Retrieved 3 August 2011.
  5. ^ "Artax". Diamond G Ranch Stallions. Archived from the original on 14 August 2011. Retrieved 24 April 2011.